Conviction of Astor's Son Helps Other Financial Elder Abuse Cases
Advocates for the elderly say the conviction of legendary New York socialite Brooke Astor's son on charges of financially abu...Read more
Reports of elder financial abuse continue to increase, and the elderly are particularly vulnerable to scams or to financial abuse by family members in need of money.
It is hard to ascertain the exact numbers of people affected by elder abuse because studies show that elder abuse is underreported. However, one study found that financial loss from financial elder abuse could be close to $3 billion a year.
While it is impossible to guarantee that an elderly loved one is not the victim of financial abuse, there are some steps you can take to reduce the chances. One option is to have more than one family member involved in caring for the loved one. You can also encourage the elder to get involved in community activities to ensure that he or she has a wide range of support. Using direct deposit as much as possible is also helpful. And of course you should always screen caregivers carefully and verify references.
Financial abuse can be very difficult to detect. The following are some signs that a loved one may be the victim of this kind of abuse:
If you suspect someone of being financially abused, there are several actions you can take:
Another valuable resource is Aging in Place's guide to recognizing elder abuse.